Co-Editor and Writer, Zola Paulse, requested that I review Party Hard as the next installment of Creative Fluff’s Video Game Review Advent Calendar. It was a toss-up between Final Fantasy III, Toren, and Party Hard and she made a snappy decision for me. Without any fanfare, let me tell you about a game where it’s 3am, you can’t sleep, and you play as a maybe-retired serial killer.
Party hard is a pixel drawn, stealth strategy game about stopping a party by any means necessary. Not intriguing yet? Let me try again. You’re a raging psychopath. It’s almost 4am and downstairs some college kids are throwing an all-night rager. Kids are puking in the street. Some guy is dancing in a bear costume. Heck, even the cops are leaving the party alone because it’s that frustrating. You decide that you possess the unique set of skills to bring your beautiful suburban neighborhood some well-earned peace and quiet. You grab a knife, your mask, some clothes and head downstairs and across the street to shut the party down permanently.
The game’s mechanics are fairly straightforward. You are able to use the majority of items within the environment in order to kill the unsuspecting partygoers. Interacting with certain objects allows you to booby-trap them (rig an explosion), sabotage them (poison some drinks) or hide the bodies (I’ve always wanted to hide a body in an ice machine). The maps are fairly static but the items and placement of objects you can interact with are procedural. This gives you the ability to at least learn from past mistakes and create a generic plan for the next time you boot up a level. The goal is to pick off victims one-by-one (or set a room of them on fire like I did). Oh – you can also dance. Literally there is a button for dancing and I find this highly amusing personally. Sometimes you just have to shake it off (the blood that is).
While you start off as a single killer, there is the ability to unlock multiple characters – each with their own motivations for wanting to get rid of people at parties. With each of these characters the game still remains the same – you can trigger random events like the DEA coming in, SWAY teams, Paramedics, FireFighters and more to roll in and ruin the party. Which brings me to two things that are shockingly real about this game even though I don’t think it was the intent:
- Swatting: You can literally fake a SWAT call and the team rolls in and murders a bunch of people and then rolls out. This would be funny if it didn’t actually happen in America.
- The cops don’t kill you when they catch you. This is great because ideally you always want to incapacitate the criminal and then put them up for trial. In reality – this doesn’t happen and it’s like… why?
Neither of those two points detracts from the game during gameplay and only came to mind when I sat and thought about it for a few seconds. Party Hard provides fun for fans of stealth games as well as 80s synth beats. Pick up a copy when you have a chance or just try the demo and see if you like it.
Party Hard Information:
It’s 3am. Your neighbors are having a loud party. Stop them. Party Hard is tinyBuild’s award-winning stealth strategy game about stopping the party by any means.
TinyBuild has partnered up with dozens of indie developers, acting as a publishing partner – providing funding, knowledge, production, artwork, guidance, etc – to make other devs’ games better.